Nomcebo Zikode, the South African singer-songwriter who is best known for her global hit “Jerusalema“, recently won the Grammy Award for Best Global Music Album and the Forbes Woman Africa Award for the Entertainment category. In this interview, she talks about how it feels to receive these accolades, the power of music to uplift people’s spirits during difficult times, and advice for young women starting out in their careers.
Congratulations on winning the Grammys and Forbes Woman Africa award! How does it feel to receive these accolades?
Thank you so much! I appreciate the well wishes; this is honestly a huge blessing for me! I can never thank God enough for what he has done for me and my career. Both the Grammy and Forbes awards are very prestigious and are a reflection of the high standards you need to excel at to be able to say you stand a chance to win them, so these awards will always have a special place in my heart.
“Jerusalema” has been described as a song of hope and inspiration, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. How important do you think music is in uplifting people’s spirits during difficult times?
Music has so many different purposes and uses; it is also very instrumental in uplifting people’s spirits in difficult times as it can be very therapeutic. Through my travels, I’ve met fans in countries that I never thought I would see myself in, who have told me how much healing they have gotten from listening to my music, even though I sing in isiZulu, my native language, which they don’t understand. That was also a testament to the fact that music has a healing and spiritual power that we may not fully comprehend, so why not try as much as we can to use it to create a better world?
As a successful female artist in the music industry, what advice would you give to young women who are just starting out in their careers?
Have set goals, stop at nothing to achieve those goals, and be very disciplined with your life and work. Have faith in your abilities and always give your best in everything you do.